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  1. #1
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    Stick with 3x9 or move to 2x10 with upgrade?

    I am wanting to upgrade my drivetrain. I currently am running x5 shifters with x7 rear and Shimano SLX front with Shimano M542, 22/32/44 and Shimano HG30 11x34, 9-Speed. I am wanting the double thumb shifters and that is why I am thinking x9 or x0.

  2. #2
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    The x9 shifters are nice with their ball-bearings this year. I think you'll save some weight if you go with the 2x10. I went 2 because I just don't need the top-end and it had plenty of low-end for my needs (18.777 to 84.5 gear inches, with 26/39 up front and a 12-36 cassette and 26" tires).

    I went with XO RD and shifters, X9 FD, and X7 cranks.

  3. #3
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    If i go 2x10 then have to change out everything. Shifters, bb, crank, cassette, both ders. If i kept 3x9 i could change out gradually. I would like to go 2x10 but i do use my top and middle the most right now. I would love x9 or x0 shifters and x9 all the rest.

  4. #4
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    I to just went thru the same as you. 2x10 or 3x9. I stuck with the 3x9 for two reasons. First the price 0f 3x9 is cheaper for the higher end components then the 2x10, and second I use all three, mainly the smaller two, but I do use the bigger one from time to time. I went with X9 for everything except the crank I went X7 and the reason for that is there is no differenct between the X9 and X7 crank except for 6 grams, but it was over $100 cheaper. So far I lovve the setup and how the X9 work. I have also read many reveiws and everyone of them say there is no performance difference between X9 and X0, the only difference is weight and price. Hope this helps you.
    "Ideal bikes are not bought, they evolve beneath you"

  5. #5
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    Is money a concern? It sounds like it.

    You're not using high end components now, do you really need x9? You could stick with X5 10 speed. You could also go with 9 speed, with 42/28 chainrings (or a 10 speed crank) and upgrade little by little. Keep your shifters and derailleurs and adjust for the double crankset. You'll lose top end, and low end compared to 3x9. Compared to 2x10 you'll only lose on the low end and gear ratios.

    You could also use a 10 speed chain with the new crank. It'll work fine on a 9 speed cassette. If you find you need more low end, then you can get the Shimano 12-36 9 speed cassette. You'll lose out some top end though. When you go to a 10 speed cassette is when you'll need the bulk of the change.

    There's lots of options.

  6. #6
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    I'd stick with 3x9. Or, something by nine, anyway. I can't see the difference in the shifters in different SRAM lines, but I've also only ridden the ones that show up at demo days. So I dunno - maybe there's a big difference in feel between x5 and x9/x0 shifters. The SLX front derailleur is pretty nice and the M542 crank reads as being pretty nice. Rear derailleurs pretty much do what they're told, unless they're broken or worn out.

    Have demoed 10-speed MTBs and made the transition on one of my road bikes, I don't think it's much of an upgrade. Actually, I'm getting ready to box up that bike and send it to my brother. I'll have de-evolved everything to 9-speed at that point, for however long that lasts.

    It sounds like you have a goal - to get the shifting action of the x9 shifters. It sounds like you have another goal, which is to switch to a double crank. If I were in your shoes... well, I wouldn't be, I like my Shimano drivetrain. But I could get the shifting action of the x9 shifters by getting some 9-speed x9, unless it's something specific to the latest, 10-speed version that you're looking for, and I can get a double crank by ordering some chain rings. That would let me use a bash guard, which is something I've also been thinking about - the part of my large chainring that points down when I make my platform is pretty chewed.

    Going to a double setup by ordering chainrings also lets me choose my gear ratios. For the gear ratios I want, I think most of the cranks that ship as doubles come out of the box geared too high. You said you use your top and middle mostly, so you might have better luck finding "your" gear ratios on a stock crank, but it might cost you a little less to do it by swapping rings, and there's something to be said for getting to choose your chainrings. One of the best things I ever did with one of my old commute bikes.

    If I were to switch to a double, I'd want to get the double-specific front derailleur. It's not necessary, but I think they're a little easier to tune and can be set up to be a little more reliable.
    "Don't buy upgrades; ride up grades." -Eddy Merckx

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by AndrwSwitch View Post
    I can get a double crank by ordering some chain rings. That would let me use a bash guard...
    On a triple up front, the chainline is measured from the center of the middle ring. On my X7 double, it's measured from the center between the two rings.

    Modding a triple into a "double" with bash is not the same as a true 10 spd double, and your chainline will be further inboard. Also, the space between the granny ring and middle is bigger than the space between the middle and outer. It will "work" but not be ideal. If you're O.C.D. about things working "perfectly" then these things may be of concern.

  8. #8
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    I'd encourage you to measure the chainlines on double and triple cranks. Since the manufacturers have been "widering" everything, my suspicion is that dropping the large ring on a triple will get you the same or better chainline. To say it another way, I think that the position between the small and middle rings on a contemporary triple is closer to the most correct chainline for a mountain bike than the centerline of the middle ring.

    And, it's not a singlespeed. But like you say, it's more of a concern for people who want "perfect" in quotes. I have to admit to a certain amount of that tendency myself at times, but I try to keep it on a leash and stop at reliability and good performance. There's really no limit, once one gets started...
    "Don't buy upgrades; ride up grades." -Eddy Merckx

  9. #9
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    My question is I have race face atlas cranks w/ a 26/39/bash, do i need 2x10 or 3x10 shifters? I have already purchased the sram xo 2x10 shifters but read some where that the 3x10 shifters are much better is this true? I haven't received the frame yet so I've yet to put it all together. Does it matter if you don't use all sram or shimano components in a drivetrain (chain/cassete/derailers/shifters…)???
    thanks

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by LuciferSam___ View Post
    sram xo 2x10 shifters but read some where that the 3x10 shifters are much better is this true? I haven't received the frame yet so I've yet to put it all together. Does it matter if you don't use all sram or shimano components in a drivetrain (chain/cassete/derailers/shifters…)???
    I don't know for sure, but I doubt the shifter for 3x10 is better than 2x10. It's the same technology.

    As for sram vs shimano. It matters only on the rear derailleur portion. They must match, that is sram shifters mean sram rear derailleur. The front derailleur doesn't matter, it's the same for all brands, just double or triple. The cassette brand doesn't matter. The chain brand doesn't matter, as long as it's 10 speed. It's a thinner outer width for the tighter spacing. In fact, I would use a 10 speed chain for everything. It's more convenient.

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